Thursday, December 6, 2012
Christmas has that funny little way of sneaking up on you. One minute you're enjoying the warm Spring days and the next you're surrounded by tinsel, with christmas songs echoing in your ears. However, I'll admit that I really do love the planning stage of christmas. I've been known to have a folder dedicated to the making and baking at christmas. I wish I was so organized the rest of the year.
This year I've purposely tried to keep things a little simpler in the way of cooking and decorations. I don't want to feel that slightly panicky, overwhelmed feeling that is unique to this times of year. Because there are end of year gatherings and end of year school concerts to go to. Presents, cards to give. Food to prepare. It is so easy to get swept into the fast momentum of this time of year, with so many things we should do, then falling into a crumpled emotional heap on boxing day morning. I've been there.
But I've been resisting so far. Refusing to worry about the fact that christmas is but a few weeks away, family guests are coming and there is no sign of a menu or even a christmas cake, let alone a pudding. Perhaps there won't be a traditional christmas cake this year. Perhaps the teachers gifts won't have six different types of biscuits, maybe half that amount. Perhaps I won't get to make that handmade star for the tree.
Sometimes there is no one else expecting all these extra things except ourselves.
I think that panicky overwhelmed feeling was sneaking up me this morning. But I'm fighting it off. I will write up that menu, but it will be a simple one. A few old favourites with perhaps a new ham glaze to try out or a new pork stuffing recipe. Just to keep things a little exciting. Some sides, a dessert or two and we are done. It is nice to have some excess for the days after christmas, but just not too much. I still have a week or so up my sleeve to get that butcher's order in.
I need to remember that half the fun is in the planning. So I'm looking forward to sitting down and planning out the food, using a new stamp to make some christmas cards, and thinking about ways of getting creative with brown wrapping paper.
The glossy magazines full of their sparkly christmas decorations, fancy menus and high end gifts are all well and good to look at, but it is not the reality for most of us, and are usually stylized and contrived. I admit to buying more magazines at this time of the year, as they really are so pleasing to the eye. Sometimes there are a few ideas to adapt to home. But usually in a far less elaborate way.
As always, there are things that fall off the list of necessities. Things that we know deep down are not really necessary. Afterall there is always next year.
Sometimes it's more about being in the moment, than ticking off that to do list.
How are your plans?
Are you trying to keep a simpler christmas this year?
Are there certain things that have fallen off your to do list too?